SpeculativeFiction


Crossover


Meet April Cassidy. She's just applied to a software development firm on Tanusha, one of the most advanced planets in the Federation. She wants to work as a programmer, studying the intricacies of artificial intelligence -- or as close as the legal restrictions will allow her to get. She is a very good candidate for the position, very familiar with the latest algorithms. Good enough to analyze them at a glance in her job interview.

But that's not surprising, because April Cassidy is really Cassandra Kresnov, an advanced AI housed in a body nearly indistinguishable from human at first glance, and nearly indestructible if you do more than glance. She was built by the League, constructed from the ground up by scientists who consider her less than human. And she's on the run.

The book is Crossover, by Joel Shepherd.
Crossover is the first novel in Joel Shephard's Cassandra Kresnov series. The book stands out from the pack as a creative exercise and an entertaining read, though it doesn't quite reach the level of a classic. Instead, it's a fast and pleasant piece of science fiction that raises questions about the nature of humanity and what it would take for an artificial human being to gain acceptance from natural humans.

The characterization is hit and miss, with some characters coming through clearly and others fading into the background. That's actually a feature rather than a bug, as it keeps the focus on the main character while moving the plot along rapidly.

The writing is very visual, and the plot moves fast with a lot of action. Readers won't be bored. It's the sort of book that would translate very well into a movie, with enough depth to make the audience think and enough action to make it a choice rather than a necessity. The main character would certainly not disappoint on sex appeal, and the "tiny little girl is a robotic killing machine" has certainly been done on screens both small and large more than once. On the whole, an enjoyable and fast read that can be thought-provoking.

Later books in this series include Breakaway, Killswitch, and the forthcoming 23 Years On Fire.

This entry was published Thu Aug 29 11:26:34 CDT 2013 by Matthew and last updated 2018-06-13 04:14:42.0.

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